Trust Me—These 4 Shoe Styles Go With Anything

For many of us in the fashion industry, the start of 2019 felt like a real reset moment. We had long been more conscious of our shopping habits and trying to pull them in check to be more sustainable, but there's a stronger urge from many women I know to craft hardworking, long-lasting capsule wardrobes that aren't boring or uninspired but just as exciting to play with as a closet full of new trend-smashing pieces.

A lot of legwork goes into reframing the entire way you shop and get dressed each day, and we're here to support if you're embarking upon a similar journey. With the team's combined extensive experience working in fashion (not to mention a rather impressive amount of time spent scrolling, editing, and trying things on for your benefit), we're drilling down to the very core of what's required for a well-curated collection of clothes and accessories.

It seems like I buy shoes just as much as I breathe, so I'm trying to curb that habit a little by thinking about which styles can be the gift that keeps on giving rather than provide me with the excuse that "I don't have the right shoes to go with that outfit." You'll need to look after them and make best friends with your local cobbler, but do keep reading to uncover the four shoes that go with everything.

WHITE PUMPS

Once upon a time, this section would have been dedicated to nude or beige pumps. These days, white pumps, slingbacks, mules, and other closed-toe styles do the same magic trick of somehow working with every ensemble. They've shifted from trend to classic and look innocuous enough to seamlessly blend into casual looks (jeans + trench + tee), work outfits (tailored jacket + trousers) or fancier evening ensembles (pretty dress + bare legs). See the proof below.

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376026767-image

White Pumps + Party Pants
(Image credit: @emilisindlev)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376028089-image

White Pumps + Bermuda Shorts
(Image credit: @greceghanem)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376029323-image

White Pumps + Printed Midi Dresses
(Image credit: @hannstefansson)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376032998-image

White Pumps + Peg-Leg Trousers
(Image credit: @sylviemus_)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376030350-image

White Pumps + Checked Trousers
(Image credit: @polliani)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376031113-image

White Pumps + Classic Jeans
(Image credit: @ruerodier)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554376032072-image

White Pumps + Culottes
(Image credit: @saniaclausdemina)

Shop white heels:

FLAT TAN SANDALS

Summer shoe trends come and go (think of how everyone used to be addicted to gladiator sandals), but there's one timeless breed that always looks elegant and grown-up: tan flats. Whether you opt for a chestnut-brown pair of slides or a strappier pair in a lighter hue, they are guaranteed to look chic and be subtle enough to pair with everything from a billowing gown to a simple trouser suit.

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554380383476-image

Tan Sandals + White Dress
(Image credit: @babba)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554380384766-image

Tan Sandals + Printed Mini
(Image credit: @eniswardrobe)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554380385955-image

Tan Sandals + Shorts
(Image credit: @hannahlewisstylist)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554380386735-image

Tan Sandals + Kaftan
(Image credit: @tineandreaa)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554380387372-image

Tan Sandals + Black Trousers
(Image credit: @umeromaan)

Shop flat tan sandals:

PLAIN WHITE SNEAKERS

I'm not a sneaker person, but even I can appreciate the fact that a pared-back, all-white kind of sneaker can work wonders with many an outfit. You already know the shoes work with jeans, so I've sought out some alternative looks below to provide a bit of fresh inspiration.

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379258717-image

White Sneakers + Glam Maxi Skirt
(Image credit: @5inchandup)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379261516-image

White Sneakers + Summer Dress
(Image credit: @andreawr)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379262378-image

White Sneakers + Slip Skirt
(Image credit: @aude_julie)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379262997-image

White Sneakers + Bias-Cut Dress
(Image credit: @camillecharriere)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379260694-image

White Sneakers + Tights + Miniskirt
(Image credit: @yin.stagram)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379264148-image

White Sneakers + Denim Mini
(Image credit: @claire_most)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554379265344-image

White Sneakers + Leather Trousers
(Image credit: @msorrig)

Shop Plain White Sneakers

BLACK STRAPPY HEELS

Black strappy heels have stood the test of time, looking as fresh in the '70s on a disco dance floor as they do today on the feed of Instagram. Right now, you'll find that slightly daintier silhouettes are in, with straps and heels looking more spindly than they might have five years ago. But I believe any decent, well-made pair of black strappies can be pulled out from the back of a closet and confidently worn again today.

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381065685-image

Black Strappy Heels + Pretty Dress
(Image credit: @emmarosestyle)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381068124-image

Black Strappy Heels + Maxi Skirt
(Image credit: @lisa.aiken)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381066986-image

Black Strappy Heels + Slip Dress
(Image credit: @fashionenth)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381069168-image

Black Strappy Heels + Denim Mini
(Image credit: @_marisamartins_)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381069752-image

Black Strappy Heels + Trouser Suit
(Image credit: @natashandlovu)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381070420-image

Black Strappy Heels + Short Party Dress
(Image credit: @styleheroine)

shoes-that-go-with-anything-279042-1554381071422-image

Black Strappy Heels + Soft Pants
(Image credit: @thora_valdimars)

Shop Strappy Black Sandals

Hannah Almassi
Editor in Chief

Hannah Almassi is the editor in chief of Who What Wear UK. Hannah has been part of the the Who What Wear brand since 2015, when she was hired to launch a UK sister site and social channels, localise content strategy and build out the editorial team. She joined following a seven-year tenure at Grazia magazine, where she led front-of-book news, fashion features and shopping specials as fashion news and features editor. With experience in both print and digital across fashion and beauty, Hannah has over 15 years in the field as a journalist, editor, content strategist and brand consultant. Hannah has interviewed industry heavyweights such as designers including Marc Jacobs and Jonathan Anderson through to arbiters of taste including Katie Grand and Anna Dello Russo. A skilled moderator and lecturer specialising in the shift to digital media and e-commerce, Hannah’s opinion and work has been sought by the likes of CNBC, BBC, The Sunday Times Style, The Times and MatchesFashion.com, among many others.

Hannah currently resides in Eastbourne with her photographer husband, incredibly busy toddler and highly Instagrammable cat.